My fiance and I are planning a wedding, in April, and we are doing everything ourselves, including the food. We are having troubles coming up with ideas on what type of foods to have that are cheap and easy to prepare. The reception will be in the early evening. Any ideas?
By Toni from Omaha, NE
How about making three different types of soups (one of them should be meatless and one should be gluten-free), and you could borrow large roasters from family members to make and serve the soups in. You could also serve different types of bread and crackers to go with the soups. If one of the soups you make is chili, you could have toppings for it, like bowls of cheddar cheese, etc. On each table where your guests are going to sit you can put a bowl of mints and a bowl of small pretzels. Instead of soda, you can fill a large punch bowl with a inexpensive homemade punch. I would also offer coffee and tea. If you want to serve alcohol, maybe you can make a vodka punch, and buy a 1/4 keg of beer. (09/30/2010)
By Patty Lynn
I suggest pulled pork BBQ on bun, an assortment of salads including potato salad and a huge roaster full of Ziti or Mostachelli as they say in the midwest. You will have cake and coffee for dessert and that's all they need. (10/01/2010)
I recommend two books. "How to Have a Big Wedding on a Small Budget" and "How to Cater Your Own Wedding".
The first book has as one of it's suggestions to buy large turkeys, roast them and use the meat to make sandwich rolls. The second book lays out how to organize "crews" to do simple tasks that all contribute to the meal. (10/01/2010)
For our wedding we planned for 150 and had a very small budget. We bought disposable chafing dishes on sale at a party store for $10 each and went to a restaurant store and got green beans, corn, buttermilk biscuits, and mashed potatoes. A friend of ours heated it up for us and then put it in the trays to stay hot. Her husband went to the Walmart deli and picked up a 100 piece and a 50 piece chicken bucket we had ordered earlier in the week. We spent about $300, $2 a person and the food was awesome! We had leftovers though, so I asked people to take them home. (10/05/2010)
An early evening wedding does not mean feast, but hors d'oeuvres and the like, along with your wedding cake. In fact, we are invited to a wedding in 2 months that is a 6:30 wedding, followed by hors d'oeuvres and cake. Even though we will have a 3 hr drive, it is up to us to feed ourselves before the wedding. The couple tried to economize and have it on a Friday night as well, much cheaper!
My son is a manager at a grocery store and he said the cheapest menu is the sliced ham on a bun. You can take a 5 lb good quality ham (about $8-10) and get a nice slice to put on the bun (party sized) for 100 slices. Consider ham sandwiches, fresh salads using fruits, pasta, veggies, etc. Make sure you cover all varieties due to ingredient use. Some recipes have nuts, dressings, mayo, etc. For those with allergies, just put a note card by the bowls with the possible offending ingredient.
My husband, son, and I helped cater a friend's backyard wedding for her daughter and we did the Chinese salad, only-fruit salad, cake, punch, rolled deli meats, sliced cheeses, buns, traditional mints/nuts and a raw veggie tray. They could put their own likings together, the family had the recipes' ingredients in bulk, cut up, stored in separate fridges, and the friend volunteers just mixed and plated it all to the serving table. Fast and easy. This was a 5 pm reception in the middle of June. She is a master gardener in the county and so it was heavenly with all the economic things done, people thought thousands had been spent, when it was just a couple hundred.
Find someone you can order bulk from. They own the DQ, so they could order off the truck all items used. (10/11/2010)
By T&T Grandma
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